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Is there a way to fix a corrupt Novell 4.10 Directory Service database?

I have a really old Novell server sitting here which has a corrupt Directory Service database.  It's kind of a long story... the server hard drive failed, sent it to data recovery, got a solid sector for sector image, transferred that back to a new drive, and booted up the server.  Everything works fine except that Novell dies during startup complaining about the directory services.  When I ran the DSREPAIR it found 35 errors and said a lot of scary things like "filling with 0" and then after that, the directory services would load but the server would lock up anytime you tried to do anything with the directory services and users could not authenticate.  I can reimage the drive and get it back to it's original state.  But I'm hoping there is a way of maybe rebuilding the directory service instead of repairing which doesn't seem to work.
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tealnet
Asked:
tealnet
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1 Solution
 
Bill BachPresidentCommented:
Two questions to better define the problem:
1) Was it a single server, or was there another server running a replica of the NDS partition?
2) Do you have a viable NDS backup from before the crash?  It can be older if it needs to be...
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NothingSiriusCommented:
If it's just a matter of getting access to the files, remove and reinstall DS. If it doesn't want to, you can force it off with a NWCONFIG -dsremove.

Note - IF it's just accessing the files you want. If you do this, all your former DS info will be gone.

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NothingSiriusCommented:
Did you run the DSRepair until it gave no more errors? Also, did you do a Local database repair? (advanced options)
DS is pretty tough .. usually you can find a way around a problem.
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tealnetAuthor Commented:
There is no backup and this is a single server.  There are only two users on the system.  There is an application on the server that needs to be run from the workstations.  So we need to get it operation so they can login again.  Since there are only 2 users and not any special access permissions or anything, it would be easy to set them up again.

I will attempt another DSRepair as well as the local database repair and see what happens.  If that doesn't work I'll try to remove it.  How would I reinstall it after that, or can I?
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tealnetAuthor Commented:
In case in matters... when I run the local DS database repair, this is the first error that comes up:

Could not read from file: "VALUE.NDS", offset 00002608
Record will be padded with 0's

Program execution may not continue normally
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NothingSiriusCommented:
NWConfig has the option INSTALL DS in addition to the REMOVE DS in the DIRECTORY OPTIONS menu. I'm looking at a 5.1 Netware as we speak, and 4.1 is REALLY far back even from that, but I think the basic terminology is the same.

On removing you're going to DESTROY your entire tree so it will give you lots of scary warnings and maybe even make you type AGREE to some stuff. If it asks, don't bother saving (or trying to save) references in another location. It MAY say it can't remove DS - if it says that, finish with the operation, then exit the menu and go back into it. If you try to remove DS again, it will probably say "Already Removed" which means you successfully did it. If not, exit NWCONFIG completely and reload it like "load nwconfig -dsremove" and try the remove operation again. It's trying really hard to keep you from doing something stupid - so it tries throwing roadblocks up.

It's pretty simple to reinstall, and you should have no problem since it's creating a whole new tree. In menu form it will ask for a tree name and a context - for simplicity's sake, use the old names and etc.

Keep us posted - and for heck's sake, if ANYONE out there wants to argue with me about whether this is a good idea, this is a good time to speak up!


Teal, you might give it another 12 hours or so to make sure no one comments on my suggestions ..

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tealnetAuthor Commented:
I'm not worried about the server.  I'm happy to try anything at this point.  I have an image that I can push to the drive any time to roll back to the beginning and start over.  Already done that a bunch of times because as soon as I do the DSREPAIR the system locks up any time I try to do anything with the DS after that.

I'll mess with the NWCONFIG and see if I can make any progress.
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tealnetAuthor Commented:
You know... I can't find NWCONFIG... it's not a module I can load or a program I can run.  Does it have a different name or am I missing something?
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NothingSiriusCommented:
Ack .. yes .. it's INSTALL in that version. Sorry!
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NothingSiriusCommented:
..and now I'm crossing my fingers that it has the DS remove/install stuff in it. DS was brand new at that time...

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tealnetAuthor Commented:
Yes, I had found INSTALL and the DS remove and install options were in there.  I managed to remove DS and re-install it.  Everything actually looks like it's working now.  One last (small) question... how do I add the users back to the system?
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NothingSiriusCommented:
CHeck for NWADMIN in the \public\win32 directory. If there's no NWADMIN .. (eek) it may be .. mm .. the dos version of same. I can't remember what it was called though.
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NothingSiriusCommented:
Should also be NETADMIN for DOS...but you should be able to use NWADMIN for Windows.
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tealnetAuthor Commented:
Well I did find NWADMIN but when I run it from windows, I get a bunch of DLL errors... maybe it doesn't like XP.  The workstations are running Windows 95... I suppose I could login as admin on a workstation and run nwadmin from there.  Or just log all 2 users in as admin and let them get back to work :)
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NothingSiriusCommented:
Mm .. the NWAdmin you probably have is for Win95 .. later versions (which you can actually download from Novell still) would likely run more successfully. Or yes, the quick and dirty option is everyone is an admin.

Make sure you start NWAdmin from a mapped drive (like F:) and use a shortcut to run nwadmn32.exe rather than just clicking on it.

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tealnetAuthor Commented:
Cool, I'll just run NWADMIN from one of their workstations tomorrow when I take the server back.  Thanks for your help, I really appreciate it!!
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NothingSiriusCommented:
My pleasure .. thanks!
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